CYPRESS — Newport Harbor High and Los Alamitos met on the same volleyball court two years ago.
What they played for back then, a CIF Southern Section Division I-AA girls' volleyball title, was also at stake Saturday.
The rematch at Cypress College didn't last as long, though. The Griffins swept the Sailors, 25-17, 26-24, 25-23.
The Sunset League rivals played on a neutral court again, but it sure seemed like Los Alamitos was at home. A huge student crowd came out to watch the Griffins (35-3).
Fans wore red, chanted and jumped for most of the night. The second-seeded Griffins used the support to beat Newport Harbor (25-9) for the third time this year.
The start by Los Alamitos was impressive and it helped the Griffins in their efforts to claim their first section crown in six years, their first under Coach Dave Huber.
The spotlight was on Huber. The last time his Griffins faced the Sailors in a section crown, Newport Harbor's Dan Glenn was the coach smiling for the TV camera.
Even though the Sailors fell short of winning their eighth section title under Glenn, the longtime coach was proud of his team.
"The kids battled back, especially after that first [set]. We definitely competed after that," Glenn said. "Just tough to get off to a bad start against a really good team."
Outside hitter Cinnamon Sary, who led the Sailors with 13 kills, rallied the team in the second and third sets.
Each time down the stretch, Los Alamitos had an answer. First, it was outside hitter Jordyn Schnabl recording one of her 14 kills to clinch the second set for the Griffins. Then in the third set, middle blocker Crissy Jones stuffed Sary's shot to end the match.
The Griffins had too much firepower for Newport Harbor, which in three matches against Los Alamitos this year only won one set.
The programs could meet again next week in the state playoffs.
"We're still alive. That's kind of what I told the kids," said Glenn, who saw Allison Schelin contribute 10 kills and Kasey Thompson and Carolyn Bockrath each finish with eight kills.
"We got a game on Tuesday. We got to go get out there and get after it."